Carpal Tunnel Nightmare

Author Subject: Carpal Tunnel Nightmare
Zoe Posted At 12:11:53 06/21/2000
I had the carpal tunnel surgery performed to both hands - symptoms now are worse than before the surgery. I have electrical shocks blasting up both arms, my elbows ache like no tomorrow, and my hands are almost always asleep.

Is there such a thing as any type of "settlement" due to my not being able to go back to work? Has anyone out there received a settlement due to severe carpal tunnel symptoms?

My arms are "toast" from the elbows down - I have no strength in my hands and I certainly can't return to my typist job.

What to do??? Would contacting a lawyer help? Any suggestions for a lawyer here in Oregon?

Thanks for your help
advocate Re: Carpal Tunnel Nightmare (Currently 0 replies)
Posted At 16:18:27 06/21/2000

Do you have an accepted CT claim? Has your Doctor informed the Insurance
Company that you can't return to your occupation? -- If "yes and yes", you
should contact your Insurance Adjuster and ask for vocational help.
When your claim is ready for closure, your disability will be rated.
This is not called a "settlement" it is an "award" ($)- and you do not need
an attorny to get the claim closed.
Del Re: Carpal Tunnel Nightmare (Currently 0 replies)
Posted At 09:32:35 06/22/2000

If you live in Oregon call the Ombudsman for Injured Workers at 1-800-927-1271. It's not a good idea to trust what adjusters say. Always confirm their statements with the above people. Keep detailed notes of any contact you have.
The carrier may fight your retraining since the schooling costs (16 months max by law) and having to pay replacement wages during that time cuts into their profit margin. I suggest you not choose their voc person or any other that works for an insurance company. These person will usually drag things out for several months while their co-workers offer you a pittance amount to give up your right to training.
Zoe Re: Carpal Tunnel Nightmare (Currently 0 replies)
Posted At 10:26:01 06/22/2000


Yes, I do have an accepted claim - I am still going through occupational therapy and now bio-feedback therapy. My appt. is next week with the IME. My doctor, of course, has not made any claims "yet".

and to Del: If I choose not to choose their vocational person, what other options do I have? And probably a really silly questions - but - what type of a dollar range is the "award"? My elbows down to my finger tips are useless as far as a typist position is considered. Would I be better off going back to work and sitting there struggling with limp arms, at least collecting a salary? Do I have any recourse against my employer?
Tarzan Re: Carpal Tunnel Nightmare (Currently 0 replies)
Posted At 21:33:06 06/22/2000

I also did carpal tunnel on both hands at once. My ring finger, and middle finger on my left hand, felt they were on fire, then turned to numbness, and tingling.

It's now been, 6-1/2 month's and the fingers no longer bother me. I'd say go out and mow the yard every day, and do some typing, squeaze a ball, lift some weights, what you can.

I've read, women have more trouble with carpal tunnel. Maybe men just beat themselves up more. Do all you can, things that vibrate seems to help alot.

Mix hot and cold therapy, a hot wet towel, and put an ice bag on it, will ease the transition to the cold.

Be tough!

They call that, sequential or sequalal. Anything that goes wrong, because of sergury is still part of your claim. Nick Sencer, or Lloyd Shebley, should be able to help as attorney.
Marty Re: Carpal Tunnel Nightmare (Currently 0 replies)
Posted At 11:45:09 06/23/2000

Use the two WI search engines and type in IME. One is on the navigation bar in most pages, the other on the top of the first message board which you can get to from the top of the index page of this forum. They've also got info in the FTP File Library.
There's lots of good advice about IME's in these places. To put in bluntly, IME's are well-paid whores that exist for no other reason but to give insurance companies a reason to close injury claims. The following is from the Speak Out page from IWA.

3. When an insurance carrier accepts a work injury claim, and many aren't from the very beginning, the injured worker can expect after a few months to be ordered to a legally mandated insurance medical evaluation (IME) arranged and paid for by the insurer. Most workers are sent to facilities that do not treat patients. These facilities exist solely to render medical opinions. They perform basic physicals, yet have full access to workers' tests, such as MRI's, CT's, cervical myelogram, and x-rays. Workers must attend or risk permanent claim closure.

Oregon Administrative Ruling 436-010-0270(8) states that the person conducting the examination shall determine the conditions under which the examination will be conducted. "Subject to the physician’s approval," the worker may use a video camera or tape recorder to record the examination. Also "subject to the physicians approval," the worker may be accompanied, or remain accompanied, by a family friend or member during the examination. If the physician does not approve a worker's request to record and/or allow the worker to be so accompanied, the physician must document the reasons.

Oregon law and administrative rules do not govern the conduct of physicians performing these examinations. They have no control over the length of examinations or the demeanor of the examiners.

It's common for these insurance company paid examiners' sworn depositions, and courtroom testimonials, to completely contradict medical opinions made to patients during evaluations. Without a recording or witness they have no fears. Washington State law does permit witnesses, and in some cases the recording of evaluations. The literature found at these consultant businesses state that they issue "fair and objective medical opinions," or words to that effect. Yet these firms sole revenue comes from insurance carriers and self-insured employers. Their economic survival is dependent on continuing what is a very profitable business relationship. We believe that this gives added meaning to the old phrase, "the customer is always right." Injury claims are routinely closed due to the findings of these medical evaluators. According to law, IME reports are given equal weight and standing to the opinions of workers' own regularly seen physician(s).

Do research on IME's. How prepared you are for that IME will determine the degree of how badly you'll be treated the rest of your claim. There's a Caroline you should talk with who you can reach through the TIES page of this website.

Good luck, Marty

Del Oregon Permanent Disability, Rating Standards (Currently 0 replies)
Posted At 13:47:36 06/23/2000




I will also send you a detailed e-mail too.

Jane Re: Carpal Tunnel Nightmare (Currently 0 replies)
Posted At 12:35:48 04/28/2001

I have had Carpal Tunnel surgery on both wrists. Cannot type for long period of time. I'm process of going to voc. rehab. Can anyone let me know if you have followed through with voc reha? I cannot find anything to suit me as everything I like requires long term keying. I was interested in medical assistant until I found out I had to do CPR. Any suggestions?

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